Boudicca is a not talked about so much in history. She was a female leader from the first century of the British Iceni tribe that lead an uprising against the Roman forces that were occupying that area at the time. Her defining moment was when she led the Iceni tribe in battle against the Romans in the Battle of Watling Street.
Most of Boudicca’s early life is mostly a mystery. She was born in to a royal family apparently, around the year 25 AD. When she was young, she was married to Prasutagus, who would later become king of the Iceni tribe. They supposedly had two daughters who were most likely born sometime around 43 AD. According to Cassius Dio, an old Roman historian, Boudicca was described as having bright, flaming red hair. Her name meant “victory”. It is unknown whether Boudicca was born Iceni or was of other descent. Boudicca eventually led the British in battle against the Romans after years of oppression. The British unfortunately lost the battle and Boudicca died shortly after.
In regards to the historical context of Boudicca’s leadership, there is a lot to cover. Early on, the British were welcoming to the Romans. The Iceni tribe was one of the six tribes to pledge their allegiance to Gaius Julius Caesar, the current ruler of Rome at that time. Even though the six tribes pledged their allegiance to him, he was unable to handle the power of other British tribes near the coast or their guerilla tactics in battle. Gaius Julius Caesar eventually left Britain and Britain remained free of Romans for almost another hundred years. During that time, neighboring tribes to the Iceni tribe became wealthy through trade. Then, in 41 AD, Claudius rose to power in Rome and decided that invading Britain would be good for his political career. Claudius was successfully able to conquer Britain again. The Iceni tribe of Britain tried to rebel around 47 AD, but Ostorius shut them down. Afterwards, Prasutagus was appointed as the king of Britain, the new puppet state to Rome, with Boudicca as queen. After her husband Prasutagus’ death, Boudicca was looked to as the leader of the Iceni tribe.
There is also quite a bit of contemporary context to Boudicca’s leadership. Britain, at the time right before their battle against the Romans, was under economic control of Rome. They had to pay for a statue of Claudius (he was poisoned and then declared a god by Nero) that they also had to worship. They also had to repay Rome for money that had been loaned to the tribes. The Iceni tribe was also being treated terribly by the Romans because, after Prasutagus’ death, the people were treated as slaves and abused.
One of the main reasons for Boudicca’s uprising was because of the rape of her daughters. This happened after Prasutagus death. Since Britain was ruled by Rome, they followed Roman law in...